Author Archive | frank

Vermont in Autumn. Photo via @LazyJackFlash.

(Re)Discovery

by / / 37 posts

I’ve lost a lot of things that were, at some point or another, dear to me. At times, I’ve even cast them away deliberately, either because of a nurtured indifference or an irrational or impulsive dislike. Regret is an easy emotion to find in reflection, it lays right at the surface and provides us with a quick…

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The Road Less Travelled

by / / 85 posts

I love wine. I mean, I like beer and scotch and can’t resist ordering a Vesper whenever I pretend to be a gentleman spy, but I love wine. As a semi-professional drinker, the biggest worry I have is that should my as-yet undiagnosed problem with alcohol become a diagnosed problem with alcohol, I’d have to stop drinking wine. A full…

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The Hard Way

by / / 170 posts

Doing things the hard way is a luxury. It says to the world that we’ve beat evolution; intelligence is no match for technology and economy is no match for indulgence. We need only step a bit outside our bubble to realize the scale of the illusion, but nevertheless it has become reality for many of us who live our…

After the leaves have fallen. Photo: Pedale.Forchetta

Velominati Super Prestige: Giro di Lombardia 2014

by / / 124 posts

I’m getting too old and cranky for all this race schedule changing. I know they already did this last year and presumably I had the same gripings then, but Lombardia is supposed to close out the season and I’m downright angry that Paris-Tours is closing out the books now; it only seems right that one of the…

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The Goalden Fleece

by / / 61 posts

Happy living in our stressful lives is all about organization. For instance, I like to sort the tasks first by priority and then group tasks of equal priority into buckets of minor priorities. Software developers creatively call this approach to organization a “bucket sort”. This helps break down what appears to be an insurmountable mess of work…

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Velominati Super Prestige: The Men’s Elite Road Race

by / / 180 posts

You can only spend so much time with the Schlecks before you start talking like them, and the fabulous Fabs seems to have crossed the threshold. I’ve heard more complaining from him this season than I have talk about pushing harder on the pedals or going steady up with more speed or going full gas like everyone…

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The Nature of Rule VV

by / / 49 posts

It never gets easier, you just go faster. – Greg LeMond Rule #5 looms above the other Rules in terms of sheer relevance to Cycling; it is the fundamental building block upon which this sport is built. The Five is what drives us, it is the force that springs from a well that flows deep within each of…

Bikes and cars don't always get along this well.

The Lowest Common Denominator

by / / 122 posts

Stupidity is a powerful force never to be underestimated. Geese are a good example; a more stupid vertebrate one would be most challenged to come across yet should you wander into a flock of them pecking about peacefully in a field, one is likely to erupt from its grazing to grab a billful of your ass and commence beating you savagely…

Puget Sound just after sunrise.

Summer Ripening

by / / 39 posts

Summer is a time for getting fat. Winter is a time for getting fat as well, but in a different way; in Winter we get fat on meals of meat and potatoes covered in sauces made of meat and potatoes. In Summer, on the other hand, our minds get fat: we get nice tans, we tone our…

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Tubular Survival Kit

by / / 102 posts

There was never any question in my mind that tubulars are more romantic than clinchers, and as a Velominatus I was always convinced that the additional time and care that goes into gluing on a set of tires would make you feel just that much more connected to your bike and the history of the…

The Prophet goes by the numbers.

Three Points in Space

by / / 62 posts

Most great ideas in life are accompanied by an unforeseen consequence of equal or greater magnitude. For instance, no one predicted that the Industrial Revolution would pollute our air and set off climate change on a global scale. Similarly, no one realized that when placing unfathomable computing power in the palm of our hands in…

This kind of work is more for the body and soul than it is for the  road.

The Cleansing

by / / 39 posts

After a night of sinning, the body must be cleansed. -The Prophet, Eddy Merckx After a week away in Atlanta for business, I feel thick and heavy. These trips away are killers; the shift in time zones means the already-too long work day is extended by a further three hours. I try my best to watch my…

Merckx casts his hand to fate; He went on to win Stage 10 of the '70 Tour from Belfort and Divonne-les-Bains

The Unknown

by / / 36 posts

The future is dark, which is the best thing the future can be, I think.- Virginia Woolf Our actions lie on the horizon of the present, in that swirling cloud where fantasy turns into reality. To plan is to cast a shadow into the future, to attempt to lay shape to the unknown. As the…

The bicycle is still freedom.

Freedom

by / / 34 posts

Choice, or the perception of it, is one of the most powerful forces on Earth. The great secret lies in the locus of control, which suggests that if given the perception of a choice we will be more willing to endure hardship or suffering. We’ll suffer even for the promise of a future intangible reward so long as we feel…

Not Forgotten: Jon Lennard, aka @itburns

by / / 49 posts

I bought a Road ID the day I learned of Jon Lennard’s death on August 12, 2013. Someone in the posts of the original announcement of his passing (below) mentioned he was identified by his Road ID. Of course he had a Road ID. What I knew of him made that perfect. So responsible and…

Fire Road 900 above Winthrop Washington

The Will

by / / 47 posts

No technology can increase the energy of the willpower of the rider, nor can it lessen the doubts which sometimes overwhelm him. – Bernard Hinault As I swung off the main road, I was momentarily consumed by the simple thrill of my tires leaving the hard tarmac and hitting the rough gravel of the unpaved…

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Look Pro: The Whale Shark

by / / 114 posts

The Whale Shark is the biggest nonmammalian vertebrate* on the planet, rivaling the dinosaurs for size. How do you feed yourself when you’re that huge without loading up on carbs all the time? Easy, you swim around with your mouth wide open for 22 hours a day and hope enough food swims in there to take the edge off the…

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Anatomy of a Photo: Bringing Back The Hour

by / / 36 posts

Brad Wiggins is sitting at home, watching his team implode at a Tour de France he was not invited to. What’s on his mind? An attempt at the Hour Record, that’s what. Now that the UCI has allowed riders to mount a conventional (track) time trial machine in their efforts and the likes of Boardman, Obree, Moser,…

Ian Stannard crushes gravel and pulls the mortals in his wake of Awesome. Photo: Pedale.Forchetta

White Lightning Shades

by / / 68 posts

I like definition, to place things in a box and tightly seal the lid. It makes me feel comfortable, like another of life’s little mysteries has been stored away for safe keeping. I also love ambiguity; it is the space wherein all interesting questions are asked; the unknown is life’s greatest beauty. You might say that makes…

Having a laugh. Photo: Pedale.Forchetta

La Vie Velominatus: Transcension

by / / 43 posts

When it comes to Rule Compliance, we have at our disposal three viable options. The first is to Obey the Rules. That one is pretty straight-forward because we wrote them down for you and also went to the great length of writing a book on the subject, partly as a public service to those suffering from insomnia. But…